Parties declare how they will improve transport access for old and disabled

Newham residents at hustings organised by Transport for All

Newham residents at hustings organised by Transport for All - Credit: Archant

An action group that campaigns for older and disabled people’s access to transport has said there is much to be done in Newham and has sent its seven key demands to the main political parties ahead of Thursday’s election.

Transport for All’s demands for accessible transport include doubling funding to make stations accessible, introducing disability equality training for bus drivers and having audio visual information on all buses.

“There’s still a lot to be done in Newham to make disabled and older people feel safe and confident using buses,” an spokesman for the group said.

“There are some fantastic drivers but still too often bus drivers don’t come right into the kerb or up to the bus stop or give people time to sit down.”

The group requested the Conservative, Liberal Democrat and Labour parties answer its key demands.

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Labour’s Kate Green said implementing more accessible and step free routes is an “important priority” for the party.

She said there were also plans to devolve powers to city and county regions which would be able to specify the type of bus service and operator it wants for its community.

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When asked what they will do to improve access to transport, a Conservative spokesperson said: “We are making public transport more accessible.

“We have released a new guide for public transport providers to help them make it easier for disabled people to use public transport and are investing in infrastructure to make it more accessible, with £100 million allocated to make improvements at 42 stations.”

Liberal Democrat President Baroness Sal Brinton said: “We want to bring into effect the provisions of the 2010 Equality Act on discrimination by private hire vehicles and taxis.

“We will legislate to give wheelchair users priority over buggies and ensure that the legislative framework for Blue Badges are applied consistently.”

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